Link Between Obesity And Environmental Chemicals?
: "A team of researchers at UNH is investigating whether the increasing ubiquity of chemical flame retardants found in foam furniture, carpeting, microwaves and computers might be related to the climbing rate of obesity in the United States.
“Environmental chemicals are a possible third component to the obesity epidemic, along with diet and exercise,” says Gale Carey, professor of nutrition and a leader of the research project, along with professor of nutrition Anthony Tagliaferro and Deena Small, assistant professor of molecular biology and biochemistry. The trio received funding for the project from the President’s Excellence Initiative Awards, which provide support for interdisciplinary research.
The flame retardants, called polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), have been produced since the 1960s; they’re now found in consumer products like carpeting, upholstered furniture, computers and hair dryers, where they retard the combustibility of these products. It’s estimated that American consumers come into contact with up to 100 products containing PBDEs per day."